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Violating 0

Wednesday, 6 May 2020 at 21:40

Vernadsky on Dr John Dunn. Vernadsky's noosphere remained within the closed system of evolution (Pictured: Vernadsky in 1889)

My belief is that life has always something to do with breaking out of closed systems. The very act of birth is the physical act of breaking free - but life is more than this.

A closed system is an equilibrium of one sort or another that remains unviolated; this is justas true at a cosmic as well as an individual level.

For life to break free the cosmos had to be violated, just as an individual must be violated to attain life.

I am equating life here to consciousness and mind. Breaking out of a closed system is a coming to consciousness. It is the emergence of mind.I am equating life therefore to something that is uniquely human; to humanness.

The emergence of life as consciousness and mind has been argued for before on an evolutionary basis. For example, Rudolf Steiner argued that only the mind of man can continue and complete the evolutionary purposes of God.

There was also Vladimir Vernadsky’s concept of the noosphere, in which the sphere of nous, i.e. of mind, is an evolutionary stage higher than the biosphere, i.e the world of minerals, plants and animals; but yet again, Vernadsky placed the emergence of consciousness and mind within a structured evolutionary process.

Both Steiner and Vernadsky had consciousness and mind within processes of evolution and therefore remaining in closed systems.

This leaves me wondering about closed systems and how truly to burst out of them; how to violate the equilibrium in order that there might be life, or that life might be. For to break free is a coming to being, with the implication that not to break free is to exist in a state of non-being, or locked in the closed circle of 0.

© John Dunn.

Cave flower

Monday, 27 April 2020 at 21:23

Cave womb on Dr John Dunn. Cave flower

The inscrutability of woman in all this.

Man enters the cave and holds up Mithraic light,

Woman would keep the darkness;

And yet Eve held out the apple

As though the cave were an open flower.

Irresistible - like a bee to nectar,

There was encounter, there was love,

But when Orpheus looked behind he lost her,

Leaving her in darkness.

© John Dunn.


Sunday, 26 April 2020 at 21:21

Phanes on Dr John Dunn.

There was a moment when I felt no guilt or compassion.
I was ruthless, cruel and victorious.

Tell me Eve, was I released from the grip of Ananke?
Look at me Eve, at least acknowledge me.

And is guilt Ananke’s revenge?
The snake of memory is entwined about me.

There was a sense of the serpent in her averted stride,
and a troubled preoccupation crossed her face.
© John Dunn.

The other

Friday, 24 April 2020 at 17:37

Spinoza and Marx on Dr John Dunn. Spinozist culture pervades all. It is the emanationism that festers at the core of all science and art. It is the post-Renaissance resurgence of the old Judaisms - original, Islamic and Christic. It is idolatry; and the idol that must be worshipped is the One.

What brings the financier, the Marxist and the anarchist together? The One. Globalisers rule through the canons of literature, art and science. The masonry of adeptscomes together in the academy to worship closure and entropy, which is passed on in simple liturgies to those outside the inner sanctum as popular culture in its myriad forms.

Their antecedents were the exiles in search of a home who brought the Renaissance down. They found a home in the One by deconstructing the sovereignties of the many.

The mantric essence of this culture is best expressed in the Spinozist dictum that ‘Freedom is the recognition of necessity.’

© John Dunn.

To the others

Monday, 20 April 2020 at 17:23

Saint of the wheel on Dr John Dunn. To the others

St Catherine, Vittore Crivelli, 1481 (V&A London)

“That’s enough,
The wheel is broken,
Let her down,
It’s time to end this,
She’s defeated us all.”

We all let her down.

© John Dunn.


Friday, 17 April 2020 at 18:05

Jasper Johns on Dr John Dunn. Jasper Johns “Untitled” (2017)
Jasper Johns/VAGA at Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY; via Matthew Marks Gallery


I looked over the still dark waters and saw you there,
Eternal, wild, and infinite.

Angel of the noosphere

And did you really appear?
Was Chaos so ordered at that moment
That you held entropy at bay?

© John Dunn.

Salvific glance

Monday, 13 April 2020 at 21:55

Red face on Dr John Dunn.

All the presuppositions,
all the idolatry,
brought low by a salvific glance.

Chance encounter, unrequited,
rain drop to the seed.


I get it, the danger of idolatry. In order to eliminate the possibility of self-idolisation there must be no presuppositions. Look what happened to Giovanni Gentile; all the logocentrism.

What there must be is an encounter.

Is it an awakening to something that was there all along? No - that would be slipping into idol worship.

Encounter, unrequited, ever-unresolved, brings to life the process of on-going creation. There must be nothing complete or fulfilled in being. Fulfilment is non-being, Chaos.

The Gnostics misread John’s Gospel, imagining the Logos always being there from a beginning. They made of it an idol outside them, never realising that they had access tothe ever-present Logos inside them; there in the sense that the present is eternal where love is present.

God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
(1 John 4:16)

There must be encounter and love; and the ever-present encounter is love-unrequited. Not to have loved is to have existed, not lived.

Picture:SARAI SHERMAN (1922-2013), AMERICAN I Am The Rose of Sharon and the Lily of The Valley, Plate I from the series The Song of Solomon, 1966
MeyerP. and Vivian O. Potamkin Collection at Dickinson College.

© John Dunn.

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